Attitudes to inheritance: An exploratory study

Ruth Hancock, Savita Katbamna, Graham Martin, Harriet Clarke and Rachel Stuchbury

A review of what is known about how attitudes toward bequeathing and inheriting wealth are changing.

Information on all aspects of inheritance was reviewed and data contained within existing national surveys were analysed to establish the changing demographic backdrop to any attitude shifts. Attitudinal survey questions on the relative importance of bequest and other motives for saving were analysed. The messages from these data are mixed: views on inheritance vary not only according to age, culture and socio-economic status, but also in relation to emotive questions of what is being bequeathed and how much can ‘properly’ be spent.

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